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Re-using waste material


In a circular economy, we are striving for creating sustainable and resilient value. Knowing that resources are endless, we should search for alternatives that can become part of a circular system. This means to rethink design and production techniques and it means establishing new aesthetics. For me, material innovations are a vital part of it.


Resources should not be seen as servants of our economy - rather we should see resources as part of our nature that need time for regeneration. So, why not use materials that are already in circulation or even considered waste?


I decided on re-using walnut shells.

What are their qualities? Which advantages do they have? Can they become a useful material again?

Out of an experimental approach with walnut shells a new material arouse. This material is made from ground walnut shells and gelatin. It deforms itself enormously while drying.


Flat samples became 

three-dimensional sculptures.

The smaller the particles, the more the material tended to morph. The characteristics of the nutshell-gelatin-mixture had determined the design process. My aim was to create an object that corresponded to its characteristics and not to force the material into a certain form.

The power of this material laid in its will to form itself.



Material Exploration

Free University of Bolzano


Andrea de Chirico

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